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It depends on how they dismissed the request you made or the question you asked? Intonation is very important.


1) Depending on their voice when they "dismissed the request", would determine how I would answer.

2) If I felt it was because they were obviously annoyed, I would say, "Sorry to have bothered you".

3) If I was surprised at their response, and not sure as to why, I would have said, "Sorry if I have bothered you".

(https://forum.wordreference.com/threads/sorry-to-have-bothered-you-sorry-if-i-bothered-you.913320/ )


Q1) Are they all (1,2 and 3) second conditionals? (1) is a bit hard to understand.

Q2) Sentences (2) and (3) look almost the same, then why did the writer used "I would have said" instead of "I would say" in (3)?

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Rizan MalikQ1) Are they all (1,2 and 3) second conditionals? (1) is a bit hard to understand.

(1) is malformed. The correction is

Their tone of voice when they "dismissed the request" would determine how I would answer.

There is no if-clause, so it's not a conditional. 'would' is just there to indicate the thought is hypothetical because it's a reply to a forum question that sets up the hypothetical situation of having a request dismissed.

Rizan MalikQ2) Sentences (2) and (3) look almost the same, then why did the writer used use "I would have said" instead of "I would say" in (3)?

(2) is a correct second conditional.
(3) should have been another second conditional with "I would say" again as in (2).


Nevertheless, native speakers frequently substitute a past tense for the technically correct past perfect tense in a third conditional, especially when the verb there is stative, often be or have. This removes 'had been' and 'had had' and substitutes 'was/were' and 'had'. Applying this to the example at hand, (3a) becomes (3b) below.

(3a) If I had been surprised at their response, ..., I would have said, "Sorry if I have bothered you".

(3b) If I was surprised at their response, ..., I would have said, "Sorry if I have bothered you".

CJ

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CalifJim
Rizan MalikQ1) Are they all (1,2 and 3) second conditionals? (1) is a bit hard to understand.

(1) is malformed. The correction is

Their tone of voice when they "dismissed the request" would determine how I would answer.

There is no if-clause, so it's not a conditional. 'would' is just there to indicate the thought is hypothetical because it's a reply to a forum question that sets up the hypothetical situation of having a request dismissed.

Although not a conditional sentence as it is, it could be transformed into a second conditional. Am I right?

Rizan MalikQ2) Sentences (2) and (3) look almost the same, then why did the writer useduse "I would have said" instead of "I would say" in (3)?

(2) is a correct second conditional.
(3) should have been another second conditional with "I would say" again as in (2).


Nevertheless, native speakers frequently substitute a past tense for the technically correct past perfect tense in a third conditional, especially when the verb there is stative, often be or have. This removes 'had been' and 'had had' and substitutes 'was/were' and 'had'. Applying this to the example at hand, (3a) becomes (3b) below.

(3a) If I had been surprised at their response, ..., I would have said, "Sorry if I have bothered you".

(3b) If I was surprised at their response, ..., I would have said, "Sorry if I have bothered you".

CJ

That's very helpful information you gave. Now I think I'm more confident about second, third and mixed conditionals. Thank you very much. Just one more question:

Can we express the idea of sentences (2) and (3) using either a second conditional or a third conditional (as you seem to have done in 3a)?

Rizan MalikAlthough not a conditional sentence as it is, it could be transformed into a second conditional. Am I right?

Yes, if you can find a way to do it.

Would you like to try? It's pretty tricky. I wouldn't even try it, but it could be a challenging puzzle for you to solve. Emotion: smile

Rizan MalikCan we express the idea of sentences (2) and (3) using either a second conditional or a third conditional ...?

Yes.

Textbook versions.

Second:
If I were surprised ..., I would say .... (imagining it in the future)
Third:
If I had been surprised ..., I would have said .... (imagining it in the past)

Modified versions.

Second:
If I was surprised ..., I would say .... (future, as above)
Third:
If I was surprised ..., I would have said .... (past, as above)

CJ

Last question:

CalifJim

Textbook versions.

Second:
If I were surprised ..., I would say .... (imagining it in the future)
Third:
If I had been surprised ..., I would have said .... (imagining it in the past)

Modified versions.

Second:
If I was surprised ..., I would say .... (future, as above)
Third:
If I was surprised ..., I would have said .... (past, as above)

CJ

Can we do the same as above with the following example:


Person A: What is the meaning of "bump into someone"?

1) Person B: If I met your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would say, "I bumped into him (yesterday)."


Can I think of sentence (1) as both a second conditional and a mixed conditional sentence, like this:

Second conditional:

If I met (or was/were to meet) your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would say (to you the next day), "I bumped into him (yesterday)." (imagining the meeting in the future)


Mixed conditional:

Text book version:

If I had met your brother (yesterday) somewhere unexpectedly, I would say (to you now), "I bumped into him (yesterday)." (imagining the meeting in the past)


Modified version:

If I met your brother (yesterday) somewhere unexpectedly, I would say (to you now), "I bumped into him (yesterday)." (imagining the meeting in the past)

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Rizan MalikCan we do the same as above with the following example:

Sorry. I don't understand the question. It's far too complicated to follow.

And anyway, the verb 'met' is not a stative verb, so you are not likely to hear the modification we talked about earlier.


But just to show you how it goes, here are some sentences for you:

Second conditional:

If I met your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would say, "I bumped into him". (imagined future)

Modified second conditional:

[ None. ]

Third conditional:

If I had met your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would have said, "I bumped into him". (imagined past)

Modified third conditional (theoretical):

If I met your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would have said, "I bumped into him". (imagined past, but unlikely to be used)

CJ

CalifJim
Rizan MalikCan we do the same as above with the following example:

Sorry. I don't understand the question. It's far too complicated to follow.


But just to show you how it goes, here are some sentences for you:

Second conditional:

If I met your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would say, "I bumped into him". (imagined future)

I used time markers (next day, yesterday,) and "to you" in my last post because I thought the second conditional: If I met your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would say, "I bumped into him", in my opinion, could suggest either of the following, couldn't it?

a) If I met your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would say (to your brother when I met him), "I bumped into him". (Here "him" means some unknown person)

Or

b) If I met your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would say (to you/someone else, but not your brother, after the meeting), "I bumped into him". (Here "him" means the brother)


It's meaning (b) that person (B) intended, when he tried to explain the meaning of "bump into someone" to person (A), in the context given in my last post. Can I also use "If I were to meet..."?


Third conditional:

If I had met your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would have said, "I bumped into him". (imagined past)


CJ

OK. But I think this could also have two interpretations like (a) and (b) above, but in the imagined past. Am I right?


But can I also use a mixed conditional to express the same idea, like this:


If I had met your brother somewhere unexpectedly, I would say, "I bumped into him".


Don't you think this is much clearer in expressing the idea than the second and third conditional, because here the "if-clause" can only refer to imagined past time and the result clause can only refer to either imagined present or imagined future time? In other words, it has only one possible interpretation, unlike the second and third conditional above.